Vegan Stollen

While you're likely to see glorious stollen loaves around Christmas time, I say it's ALWAYS a good time to bake sweet, rich bread. My Vegan Stollen is easy to make but does require a patience and care, but it's absolutely worth it and makes a fantastic, show-stopping treat.

This recipe is made up of a spiced loaf filled with dried fruit and almonds, and filled with a homemade marzipan. If marzipan isn't for you feel free to omit, though I'd encourage you to try my version which doesn't have any  strong almond extract and adds a lovely texture.

It also make two loaves, so you can enjoy one at home and give the other as a Christmas gift!

Option: soak the dried fruit in rum or alcohol of choice overnight, then drain and add to the dough.

Ingredients for the dough

  • 250ml soy milk, warm
  • 7g instant yeast
  • 1 tbs + 80g caster sugar
  • 500g plain flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 10g lemon zest
  • 2 tsp egg replacement powder mixed with 2 tbs water (or the equivalent of 2 eggs according to instructions)
  • 100g vegan butter
  • 30g slivered almonds,
  • 100g sultanas
  • 50g mixed peel
  • 50g dried cranberries
  • Rum or alcohol of choice to soak the fruit, to taste (optional, I prefer without)
  • 25g melted butter
  • Icing sugar, to taste

Ingredients for the marzipan

  • 225g blanched almonds
  • 110g icing sugar
  • 40ml water, or more or less as needed
  • 1/2-1 tsp almond or rosewater essence, optional (I prefer to omit this)

Instructions for the dough

  • Oil a large bowl and set aside 2 tea towels.
  • Combine milk, yeast and 1 tbs of sugar in a jug and set aside for 10 minutes.
  • Place flour, cinnamon, salt, cardamom, nutmeg and zest in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook.
  • Mix for 1 minute at a medium speed, then slowly add the yeast mixture and egg replacement mixture until incorporated.
  • Finally, add the butter, and continue mixing for 7 minutes.
  • Add the almonds, sultanas, mixed peel and cranberries and mix for 1 minute. If you've soaked the fruit in rum, drain before adding.
  • Pour dough into the oiled bowl, cover with tea towels and leave in a warm place to proof for 1 hour.
  • Make the marzipan.
  • Preheat oven to approximately 175 degrees Celsius and set aside 2 baking trays.
  • Turn dough onto a floured surface and divide into two.
  • Roll out into long loaves with tapered edges, then place a log of marzipan slightly off centre in each one.
  • Cover the marzipan using the wider side of each loaf (the side without the marzipan).
  • Tuck the folded dough underneath each loaf, then place on prepared trays.
  • Cover each one with a tea towel and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
  • Brush each loaf with butter, then place into the oven.
  • Bake in the oven for 45 minutes - 1 hour, until browned on top and springy to the touch.
  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 30 minutes, then sprinkle generously with icing sugar.
  • Enjoy hot or store in an airtight container until ready to eat.

Instructions for the marzipan

  • While dough is resting, place almonds and icing sugar into a food processor and blend until fine crumbs form.
  • Continue blending for approximately 5-10 minutes.
  • Slowly add water, 1 tbs at a time, until mixture comes together to form a ball.
  • Divide into two equal portions and roll into logs.

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